Thursday, 12 September 2013

Ingrown hair: causes and treatment

When you start noticing strange bumps springing up on your beautiful face, you should know that they are neither hives nor pimples but ingrown hairs. These are hairs which curl around in your skin and grow back rather than rising up from the skin. In most cases, they result from dead skin clogging up the hair follicles. This forces the hair to grow sideways beneath the skin instead of outward and upward. While ingrown hairs can be embarrassing and irritating, they are not serious. The problem can be fixed easily with an effective ingrown hair treatment. 

Ingrown hair causes skin irritation and produces a red, raised bump which can sometimes be a group of bumps which appears like little pimples. At other times, ingrown hair forms a boil like, painful sore. They can be uncomfortable and itchy, especially when they are many. Pus can sometimes be formed inside these bumps and you can even see the hair causing this problem. In men, the problem comes as little bumps appearing on the cheeks, neck or chin after shaving. In women, the ingrown hairs mostly show on legs but are also common in the armpits and public area. Having ingrown hairs on your buttocks isn’t a surprise either but you can use ingrown hair treatment to deal with it.

Ingrown hair can be caused by many things and anyone can suffer from this problem. However, people whose hair is very coarse or curly are more vulnerable and most likely to be victims. Curly hair has a tendency of bending back easily and re- entering the skin after being cut or shaved. Sex hormones are also responsible for ingrown hairs as they cause excessive growth of hair. Some of the hair in this case can easily be trapped under the skin. In most cases, this problem tends to disappear even when no ingrown hair treatment is used. However, if it fails to disappear, ingrown hair might be infected and darken the skin permanently. It can also leave a scar behind especially if it is picked and scratched roughly. 

If your ingrown hairs have become infected and are bothering you, the doctor will use a sterile scalpel or needle to cut the skin gently and release it. Then, he will prescribe an ingrown hair treatment for complete cure. Steroid medicine for example is recommended for rubbing the skin and reducing the swelling. Retinoids can also be used for removing the dead skin cells as well as reducing changes on skin pigment which can be caused by ingrown hairs. Antibiotics are the last kind of prescription medicine the doctor will give you. You will rub the antibiotics on your skin or take them through mouth for treating an infection resulting from ingrown hairs. 

Actually, there is no real ingrown hair treatment as such rather than the hair naturally growing out from under the skin. Longer hairs are less sharp at ends and their chances of curling around the skin and breaking through are less. Avoiding shaving your beard or armpit hair using a razor doesn’t guarantee that you won’t have ingrown hair.

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